Three Michigan State football players have all been dismissed from the team Tuesday, according to The Lansing State Journal. Defensive end Josh King (freshman, 19), starting wide receiver Donnie Corley (freshman, 19) and backup safety Demetric Vance (freshman, 20). This came soon after a judge issued arrest warrants for all three on sexual assault charges.
King is reportedly charged with one count of first-degree criminal sexual conduct and one count of third-degree criminal sexual conduct. He’s also been charged with capturing an image of an unclothed person. If he’s convicted, it could result in up to life in prison.
Both Corley and Vance have reportedly been charged with third-degree criminal sexual conduct. Each could face up to 15 years in prison if convicted.
Not only did the Spartans struggle on the field in 2016, going 3-9, but they also have dealt with plenty of off-field issues as well. The Detroit Free Press broke down a timeline of incidents away from the field for the Spartans, dating back to October 30, 2016, when DE Demetrius Cooper allegedly spit in the face of an East Lansing parking and code enforcement officer.
Here’s what you need to know about King, who was a freshman defensive end for the team.
1. King’s Charges Stem From January 16 Incident at a Party
The situation came on Michigan State’s campus, at a party on January 16. Detective Chad Davis of the MSU police department testified that King had asked a woman if she “wanted to speak somewhere quiet.” King eventually pulled her into a bathroom and “tried to get the victim to have sex with him.”
From that point, the victim then said that “King forced (her) to perform oral sex on him,” then “pulled her pants down” and had sex with her.
From that point, King let Vance and Corley into the bathroom at different times, and the detective testified that both forced the victim to have oral sex with them.
2. King Was the Highest-Rated Recruit in Hinsdale South High School History
During his time with Hinsdale South, the defensive end King totaled 20 tackles-for-loss as a senior. He was expected to start this season, according to the Chicago Tribune.
King opted to select Michigan State over the likes of Michigan, Penn State, Notre Dame and Oregon, among others and wound up with 10 total tackles in his first collegiate season. ESPN’s recruiting had King as the No. 25 prospect at his position and No. 2 in Illinois.
3. King Was Named Top Player in Illinois by Detroit Free Press in ‘Best of the Midwest’
The Detroit Free Press broke down the top player from every stated in the midwest, and King earned that honor for Illinois. The breakdown for King stated the following:
Highlights: 82 tackles, 8 sacks, 20 tackles for loss, 15 quarterback hurries. U.S. Army All-American, Two-time conference defensive lineman of the year, All-Conference, All-State and All-American.
Coach Mike Barry: “Josh is a state champion wrestler and an All-American football player, but has remained humble and realizes the best is yet to come. He knows what sacrifice is and remains hungry to achieve his potential.”
College choice: Michigan State
4. King Was a Back-to-Back State Champion Wrestler
According to Michigan State’s official website, King became the first wrestler from Hinsadale South to win more than one state title. His second of two came when he won the Class 2A title as a senior with an 18-1 record.
King also won the Class 3A wrestling title as a junior, compiling a 49-1 record. He finished his wresting career as a four-time state qualifier in wrestling. According to MLive.com, Spartans head coach Mark Dantonio believed wrestlers are some of the hardest workers on the football field.
It was noted that Dantonio’s team at the time had two former Illinois state champs on their starting offensive line in Jack and Brian Allen.
5. King Grew up With 7 Family Members in a 3-Bedroom Apartment
In a story written by the Chicago Tribune, King’s family life was broken down a bit more in-depth. He grew up in just a three bedroom apartment surrounded with seven other family members, including his 70-year-old grandma, who he apparently made a point to say goodbye to everyday.
His mother, Niesha Smith, was 14 years old when she had her son. Venita Smith, his grandmother, adopted Niesha one year after Josh was born, and also adopted her younger sister Verneka. Josh’s father died when he was seven years old and he never knew him. He did grow up with his unle, Phillip Howlett, who was a former football player and wrestler.